Friday, April 09, 2010

Finest Funeral Home in Iowa Open to Public

From the Chariton Leader - November 10, 1931

Sam Beardsley Announces Formal Opening of
New Home for Saturday and Sunday.
Building Cost $10,000
Two Floors Will be Used in Funeral Services
 The new Beardsley Funeral home will be thrown open to the general public of Southern Iowa at a formal opening on Saturday and Sunday, November 14 and 15, Sam Beardsley, owner, said Tuesday.  The new home was completed recently at a cost of $10,000 which included remodeling the Larimer home and installing the latest funeral equipment.  The building has four floors, two of which are turned over to the exclusive use for funeral services.

The entire home has been remodeled and finished in white paint.  It presents an attractive appearance with tall shade trees and landscaping, with simplicity, the major note surrounding the home.  The porch of the home is in stone.  The front room of the house has been made into an office, the floor of which is inlaid presenting an unusually sober picture.

A door to the rear of the office opens into the reception room and a circling, wide stair case mount toward the second floor from this room.  To the left of the office is the state room.

Opening off the reception room is the chapel capable of seating several hundred.  The draperies of the chapel are in steady red with walls in two tones of cream.  The rostrum of the chapel is in the west end of the building.  Mounted on the rostrum is a microphone, through which the speaker's voice is amplified to every room in the building.  The turner public address system also furnishes organ music prior to and following the service.

To the left of the speaker, across the hallway on the first floor is the family room where relatives may sit in comparative separation.  The family room will seat 45 persons.

At the rear of the first floor wide doors open into the garage where the six automobiles comprising the Beardsley carriage service are stored.  The casket is loaded into the hearse inside the building.  The car service of the Beardsley home includes three passenger cars, one hearse, one ambulance and one truck.

Mounting to the third floor on the electric automatic elevator, the service rooms of the home are located.  The largest room on the third floor is turned over to the casket display room where the buyer may purchase any type of casket.  To the rear of this room is located the burial garment room where dresses and suits may be purchased for burial.  In this room is stored the baby caskets.  On this same floor is the operatinng room where the body is prepared for burial.  A closet on this floor contains all the undertaking equipment.

The second floor has been turned over to the living quarters of the Beardsley family.  This floor lists bed rooms, a sitting room and a dining room together with a kitchen and ironing porch in the rear.  The floor has a guest room which is always available for guests of the home.  The maid room is located on this floor.

In the basement a mechanical coal stoker furnishes heat for the building.  A lounging room for the employees of the home is located in the basement while a toilet and shower bath has also been installed.  The laundry room completes the basement rooms.

The home is one of the finest outside of Des Moines.  The home is capable of furnishing the finest in funeral service and all Chariton can share the pride of the owners in this fine asset to this community.

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